The game world is two-dimensional, but divergent paths will take the player into the foreground or background, allowing greater freedom of movement while preserving the two-dimensional feel of the show. Platformer elements will be absent from the game; jumping was trialled, but ultimately shelved early on in development.
The game will feature turn-based combat similar to the kind seen in the Paper Mario and Final Fantasy games. However, fighting also has a timing component to it, with well-timed successive inputs resulting in larger combos or more successful defending.
Weapons can also be augmented in a style similar to Final Fantasy VII, through different upgrades such as "fire", "electricity" or "poison."
There will also be a summoning system, allowing the player to summon other characters to help in battle. Most battles will involve the player and his party against a group of enemies. Players will also control all members of their party so that they can remain in control throughout combat.
Fitting in with the theme of South Park, all weapons, armor, and gear will look as if they were created or found by children. Obsidian says one can expect to see weapons such as rolling pins and wooden swords, and armor such as football helmets and pasta strainers. The combat of the game is described as, in essence, "kids being kids" (i.e. "little bastards"), with lots of "juvenile violence" with "unsafe toys" - including flaming tennis balls, gardening implements and ninja stars.
The game starts off with the player creating his or her avatar with Eric Cartman. As the game is a role-playing game, there will be multiple ways to customize one's character. Obsidian claims that the level of customization outstrips that of any known online character generator.
One definitive aspect is what class the player chooses, which informs the approach the player takes to combat. There are four classes: